Homebuyers: Final Walk-Through Essential Before Real Estate Closing
The first thing you want to find when you walk into your new home after the closing is that the house you just bought is in exactly the condition you expected. A final walk-through within 24 hours prior to signing the papers and handing over the checks will help ensure that nothing has changed, that all required repairs have been completed and the home is clean and ready for its new owners. Always insist on a final walk-through.
12 Tips on the all-important homebuyers final walk-through
- Have your real estate agent accompany you; it’s always best to have another pair of knowledgeable eyes along to pick-up on things you might miss in your excitement. Chris Hounchell & Associates of Keller Williams Realty is expertly qualified to make every step of your closing a smooth success.
- Ask the seller to accompany you; they know about all the house’s little peculiarities and can answer any last minute questions you might have. It’s also a good idea to have a good relationship with the seller as you may have questions for them later.
- Turn on all the lights and faucets, flush the toilets and check that the appliances you purchased are all there and are working properly. Take the time to run the dishwasher, turn on the ceiling fans, ring the doorbell, make sure the hot water heater works, test the security system, etc.
- Test the heating and air conditioning system regardless of the time of year.
- Open and close all doors and windows. Are they working right? Is there any breakage? Are all the screens in place?
- Does the garage door opener work and do you have all the remotes?
- Check floors, ceilings and walls for any signs of mold or mildew, especially in a home that has been vacant for a while. Also check for any damage that may have been done by movers.
- Confirm that all repairs specified in the sales agreement have been completed and that the property, inside and out, has not deteriorated since your last visit. Also be sure the seller has provided you with warranties for any work that was done as well as manuals for all appliances.
- Outside, have there been any changes in the landscaping and does the sprinkler system work properly?
10. Did the seller leave the house clean and without mountains of debris at the curb? Did they leave any personal belongings behind?
11. At the closing, be sure to get all keys to the home. If you’re buying a condo, you’ll also need keys to your mailbox, storage space and common areas. Get the alarm system codes and any other access info you might need.
12. If there are issues to resolve following the final walk-through, you may need to delay the closing until everything is completed. If the closing date cannot be changed, work out issues during the closing and have the seller compensate you for any costs you may incur.
Chris Hounchell & Associates is the leader in general real estate, pre-foreclosure, short sale and foreclosure markets in the St. Petersburg-Tampa area. Contact Chris Hounchell today at 727-642-9107.